While no one can promise you that your disability claim made to the Social Security Administration (“SSA”) for Social Security Disability Insurance benefits (“SSDI” or “disability benefits”) will be approved, there are certain things that you can do to improve your chances of receiving a favorable outcome.
One of those things is to make sure that the SSA has the evidence it needs and wants to prove you are disabled.
Not sure how to go about doing that? We can help.
Another thing that can help is making sure that you submit the right documents to the SSA with your application.
Here are just 2 things that you can do to make sure the SSA has evidence of your disability.
Get Your Medical Records Yourself.
When you apply for disability benefits, the SSA will ask you to sign a release so they can get your medical records from your treating physicians, hospitals, clinics or any specialists you have seen.
While it may sound good to let the SSA handle it, many times doctor’s offices are not very cooperative and medical records are either never sent or they take a long time to receive. In many cases this can cause significant delays in having a claim decided by the SSA or they will simply deny a claim due to missing or incomplete medical records. When that happens, you don’t get to go back and “fill in” with medical records. Your claim is denied. At that point you either have to file a new claim and start again, or appeal the denial. Which means that months and months have gone by and you have gotten nowhere with your claim.
If instead you get your medical records yourself and submit them with your application, you can make sure that the SSA gets all your medical records and has them in time to avoid delay.
Submit a Medical Source Statement From Your Treating Doctor.
The second thing you can do to be certain that the SSA has sufficient evidence of your disability is to submit a “Medical Source Statement” to the SSA with your application.
Sometimes called a “Statement of Limitations,” a “Medical Opinion,” or “Statement of Permanent Restrictions,” a Medical Source Statement is a written statement from your treating doctor that gives his/her medically-informed opinion about what you can or cannot do.
It is important because it is a medical opinion about the ways in which your condition(s) limit your ability to do things like: lift heavy objects, bend, walk, sit, stand, twist, use your hands, etc. This is critical to the SSA’s evaluation of how your condition(s) limit you from doing your past work, other types of work, and everyday activities.
The Medical Source Statement is a form that you take to your doctor and ask him/her to fill it out.
Doctors don’t have to fill out these forms and the SSA will not send one out for you, but if you can take the initiative here and get your doctor to complete the form, it can go a long way towards establishing your disability for purposes of your claim.
If You Want Any Help With Your Disability Claim, Call Us.
Navigating the SSDI system is not easy. That is why we always suggest that people hire counsel before they submit their disability application to the SSA. If you are thinking of applying or have had your claim denied, call us. We handle only social security disability cases. We have offices in Springfield, Cape Girardeau, Columbia, Jefferson and other cities in Missouri, and we have offices in Kansas, Illinois and even in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. We offer free consultations and we do not get paid unless you win your case. Connect with us on Facebook or LinkedIn, or contact us today to set up your free appointment.